Biolase, Mekics collaborate on COVID-19 ventilators

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Laser and CAD/CAM scanner company Biolase is partnering with intensive care unit (ICU) equipment manufacturer Mekics to manufacture and supply MTV-1000 portable ventilators through Biolase's facility in California.

Biolase will make and distribute South Korea-based Mekics' portable ventilators under an emergency use authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and an exemption from the state of California to operate, market, and produce the products due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

MTV-1000 is a field-tested, ICU-level, portable ventilator that has pressure-control and an internal positive end-expiratory pressure feature, which is often required for COVID-19 patients.

Todd Norbe, Biolase CEO, said the companies already have received more than $10 million in orders and expect to quickly ramp up production to double the number of orders over the next few weeks.

"It is important for companies all across the country to do what they can to fight the COVID-19 pandemic," Norbe told in an exclusive chat. "When given the opportunity to partner with Mekics to supply ICU-grade portable ventilators, we felt called to leverage our experience in manufacturing and distributing medical devices to do our part in the fight against the virus. Given that we already have an FDA-registered facility and that Mekics is a leading provider of ventilators, it seemed like the perfect fit for us to utilize our expertise and provide hospitals with desperately needed equipment.

"We are focusing our energy to quickly ramp up production and supply these much-needed devices across the country," he added. "There is a global shortage of healthcare equipment capable of supporting COVID-19 patients, so it is our hope that this partnership will aid in the fight against the pandemic."

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